NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – For those in New Jersey who have been living without electricity since superstorm Sandy arrived, things are slowly getting better.
Jersey Central Power & Light reports about 597,000 outages and PSE&G says they still have about 600,000 outages.
On Saturday, Gov. Chris Christie announced that he has specific restoration estimates by town.
PSE&G’s Paul Rosengren told WCBS 880 that they have been working on their transmission backbone and all of their switching stations are now energized.
“Those switching stations feed our substations and we’ve been able to bring back 16 of those today,” he said. “So, we’re really continuing to work on the last 20 or so substations that need some work and really beginning to tackle the overhead restoration, which is the lines down, the trees on lines, and the rewiring of poles and replacement of poles, which takes a lot of time.”
Rosengren said people are being brought back online every hour.
He said they have 2,700 workers from out of state on the job on top of their own 600. Another 300 were due to arrive today and still another on Sunday.
He said the chunk of the system that will take longest is fed by three substations in Hoboken where the flooding was severe and it took a long time for the water to recede.
He said they are looking at other options there and working with FEMA to bring in generators to restore hospitals and other critical structures.
PSE&G still hopes to have the “mast majority” of customers powered up by Friday, November 9.
“But that doesn’t mean that we won’t have pockets after that of really difficult situations,” Rosengren said.
He said they have also opened up food centers for people in the hardest hit areas. Those locations are the CVS parking lot at 59 Washington Street in Hoboken (24/7), at Red Neck Grove in Moonachie (8 a.m. to 9 p.m.), the Paramus Park mall in Paramus (8 a.m. to 9 p.m.), at Westside and Claremont Avenue in Jersey City (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.), and at St. James Church in Newark (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.).